Angola is one of only seven African countries where Chinese group Huawei has created training centres, which, according to researcher Benjamin Tsui are an opportunity for these countries to acquire knowledge in information technology.
Tsui, in a study for the China-Africa Research Initiative, at US Johns Hopkins University, argues that the involvement of telecommunications groups such as Huawei “can help improve infrastructure and cultivate local staff through transfer of knowledge and technology.”
The researcher makes a number of recommendations to the governments of countries where the Chinese group is present, including the establishment of partnerships with schools and universities, providing training programmes and internships and also with local telecommunications companies.
Creating incentives for foreign companies to set up training centres and more flexible labour legislation are other recommendations made by US researchers.
The Director of Huawei in Angola, James Yang said in 2015 the subsidiary of the Chinese group had already given telecommunications training to over 800 Angolan technicians, having created more than 500 jobs since it entered the Angolan market in 2006.
Huawei is considered a market leader in Angola, where its results increased between 15% and 20% in 2015, according to the director of the subsidiary, which has an exclusive contract with the country’s largest telecom operator, Unitel.
In Mozambique, the Huawei group is also preparing training in information and communication technologies as part of a project called “Mozambican Seeds for the Future” in collaboration with the Ministry of Labour, Employment and Social Security, the vice president of the group, Guo Tian Min, said recently in Maputo.
In all the African countries, Huawei provides training to about 12,000 students per year, establishing the aims, within the framework of social responsibility, of knowledge transfer and hiring of skilled local labour.
Benjamin Tsui said the focus on African workers, who make up about 60% of the Huawei’s workforce in Africa, was also justified by the rapid expansion of the information technology industry in these countries, the knowledge of local realities, lower costs than bringing Chinese workers and also by legal incentives for local hiring.
Angola, one of the telecommunications markets with greatest growth in recent years in Africa, also attracted another Chinese group from the sector, ZTE, which launched with Movicel, another Angolan operator in the country, the fourth-generation network (4G). (macauhub/AO/CN)